How can I Protect my Wealth?
Financial life admin tips for protecting your wealth
In this article, Partner Lenore Rice looks at how and why you need to be thinking about getting on top of your Finance admin.
Maybe you’ve successfully achieved that promotion to partner, come into legacy wealth or sold part or the whole of your firm or family business or property? Time to get a few things sorted out.
Whilst it may seem obvious to point out that you need to have certain legal documents in check in order to maintain and protect your affluence, it is very often one of the most common things that is neglected.
Instructing a tax professional to help you plan for the future can mean that you are prepared for all eventualities. They can provide advice relating to capital gains, income and inheritance tax but can also highlight areas you may not even be aware of.
What are the five things you should be considering when it comes to protecting your newly acquired wealth?
As with all things in life it pays to have a plan. Defining your short term and long-term goals with an advisor that you trust can bring clarity and inform the steps you need to take to reap the maximum rewards from your wealth. There is a misconception that some of these steps can wait until later in life, but we think it’s never too early to develop good habits and get your house in order! Remember once you have your plan in place it will become easier to review and update it subject to life changing events such as that promotion you have worked so hard for and accomplished, perhaps marriage, birth of children, divorce or receiving inheritance.
Allow time for tax
Instructing a tax professional to help you plan for the future can mean that you are prepared for all eventualities. They can provide advice relating to capital gains, income and inheritance tax but can also highlight areas you may not even be aware of. A tax expert can help you analyse and evaluate which structure is best for your business as it evolves, then can advise on business restructuring and succession planning. It’s also worth considering the importance of pension advice as pension contributions can be a tax efficient way of accruing wealth for your future. Don’t let tax be an area where you fall short– mistakes can be costly.
Protect your legacy
You’ve worked hard for your money so make sure that your loved ones and other parties benefit from your wealth in the way that you imagined and planned. If you have specific ideas about what you would like to see happen with your assets, then take control of setting a clear plan which others can follow once you are gone. Consider who your obligations are to; both personally and professionally. Personal and business insurance solutions with the use of trusts can ensure policy proceeds remain outside your estate and can be readily available to your loved ones or surviving business owners. You might consider, where possible, the use of a cross-option agreement to offer your loved ones certainty, as the surviving business owners have the option to buy and the Executors of your estate have the option to sell your business interests.
Look after your future self
Once you have made a will to protect your wealth, then an equally important step is to create a ‘Lasting/Enduring Power of Attorney’. If you become incapacitated in the future, then an LPA/EPA will mean that you give others permission to act on your behalf. Being able to choose the people you trust to deal with your most personal decisions and finances whilst you are still able to is something that is often overlooked but which has huge implications for your wealth and well-being. In absence of an LPA/EPA a court application for a financial controller would have to be made. You might consider separate business attorneys to step into your shoes if you are a shareholder in the business.
Call the professionals
It may be that you need some assistance from an independent financial adviser who can help you set a plan for the money you have now but also the wealth you aspire to in the future. They can help you prepare for a rainy day but also for a potential crisis.
Our specialist private-client team regularly advise High Net Worth individuals, providing valuable support which enables them to navigate some of their most important life decisions.
Get in touch and we’ll advise you on best practice with managing and protecting your wealth and assets.